Can artificially selected phenotypes influence a component of field fitness? Thermal selection and fly performance under thermal extremes.
ABSTRACT Artificially selected lines are widely used to investigate the genetic basis of quantitative traits and make inferences about evolutionary trajectories. Yet, the relevance of selected traits to field fitness is rarely tested. Here, we assess the relevance of thermal stress resistance artificially selected in the laboratory to one component of field fitness by investigating the likelihood of adult Drosophila melanogaster reaching food bait under different temperatures. Lines resistant to heat reached the bait more often than controls under hot and cold conditions, but less often at intermediate temperatures, suggesting a fitness cost of increased heat resistance but not at temperature extremes. Cold-resistant lines were more common at baits than controls under cold as well as hot field conditions, and there was no cost at intermediate temperatures. One of the replicate heat-resistant lines was caught less often than the others under hot conditions. Direct and correlated patterns of responses in laboratory tests did not fully predict the low performance of the heat selected lines at intermediate temperatures, nor the high performance of the cold selected lines under hot conditions. Therefore, lines selected artificially not only behaved partly as expected based on laboratory assays but also evolved patterns only evident in the field releases.
Article: The genetic covariance among clinal environments after adaptation to an environmental gradient in Drosophila serrata.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: We examined the genetic basis of clinal adaptation by determining the evolutionary response of life-history traits to laboratory natural selection along a gradient of thermal stress in Drosophila serrata. A gradient of heat stress was created by exposing larvae to a heat stress of 36 degrees for 4 hr for 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 days of larval development, with the remainder of development taking place at 25 degrees. Replicated lines were exposed to each level of this stress every second generation for 30 generations. At the end of selection, we conducted a complete reciprocal transfer experiment where all populations were raised in all environments, to estimate the realized additive genetic covariance matrix among clinal environments in three life-history traits. Visualization of the genetic covariance functions of the life-history traits revealed that the genetic correlation between environments generally declined as environments became more different and even became negative between the most different environments in some cases. One exception to this general pattern was a life-history trait representing the classic trade-off between development time and body size, which responded to selection in a similar genetic fashion across all environments. Adaptation to clinal environments may involve a number of distinct genetic effects along the length of the cline, the complexity of which may not be fully revealed by focusing primarily on populations at the ends of the cline.Genetics 08/2004; 167(3):1281-91. · 4.01 Impact Factor